Twilight Discovery

Sneaking wasn’t my favorite activity. Too much to go wrong. Especially at this time of day. Most people think that sneaking around after dark is very dangerous. All sorts of nasty creatures, both human and non-human, were out and about. But what most people didn’t know was that after dark wasn’t the dangerous time. No, twilight was always the problem.

Twilight is that space between fully light and fully dark. It provides the entrances for all those nasty creatures, particularly the non-human ones, to come through into our world. Which was why I really didn’t like sneaking around at twilight. Like I was doing right now. Something had called me out and I had to respond. I was only human after all. Okay. Maybe a little more than human, but still, more human than not.

A small sound echoed down the alley I was crossing, and I froze. Rat? Stray cat or dog? Person? Something else? I heard a quiet snuffling noise, accompanied by scraping sounds and released the tension in my shoulders. A stray dog most likely. I had to stop myself from running down the alley to get the dog out of the way. Innocents, be they human or animal, should not be here right now. If the situation went tits up as I was expecting, there would be lots of flailing around with sharp weapons and lots of blood. Neither were good for innocents to get in the middle of.

I eased my way down the alley. The light slowly draining from the sky made seeing a bit more difficult, but not impossible. I saw the back half of a dog lying down. Maybe I could encourage it to move along, out of harm’s way. The snuffling sounds paused, and I heard a small, pain-filled whine. I froze again. Was the dog a trap? Had the creatures I was seeking somehow known I was coming and set up the dog to lure me in? A red haze started to fill my sight. If they’d hurt a dog to get to me… I would certainly make them regret their choices.

The whine came again, and I knew that trap or not, I had to help the dog. I slowly paced toward the sound, one hand on the axe hanging from my belt, my other hand holding my iron knife. I crossed to the other side of the small alley so that I could see the dog before anyone or anything near it could see me. Fortunately, my vision in low light was pretty good and I spotted the dog lying down, partially concealed by a decaying wooden box.

Either I made a sound (unlikely) or I was upwind of the dog because its head came up sharply and it struggled to regain its footing.

“Easy, boy. Easy,” I whispered, keeping one eye on the dog and one on my surroundings. Nothing felt out of place, and I allowed myself to relax just a fraction. I continued to ease my way toward the dog.

“It’s okay. I wanna help you,” I murmured. “Let me get a look at you, pretty boy.”

The dog, a mutt that looked like a cross between an Aussie shepherd and a Lab with a square lab head surrounded by the Aussie marled coat and sporting a fringed tail, stared at me, but didn’t try to get away. From the way he was holding his right front leg, I doubted he could move very fast. Once I got close enough, I held out my hand for him to sniff. As he sniffed, his tail came up slowly and gave a tentative wag. I reached up to scratch his ears and his head pressed into my palm.

Pausing to scan the alley once again, I sent out my senses and found nothing else lurking in the alleyway. I gave the dog another pat on the head and moved closer.

“Can I see that leg, sweetie?” I asked in a quiet voice, kneeling down to his level.

The dog’s head tilted to one side before he hopped around to present the bad leg to me.

“Did you understand me,” I asked, running my hand gently down the leg. He whined when I hit the spot just below the elbow joint. “Okay. That feels broken. Now how am I going to get you home?” I muttered.

The dog raised himself up on his hind legs and draped his good front leg over my shoulder and rested his head on top of the leg. I grinned. “I suppose I could carry you, but it will have to be piggyback. I need to see in front of me,” I told him.

I eased him back down to the ground and reached around to pull off my backpack. After shifting some things around and shoving them into the outer pockets, I cut two holes in the bottom of the pack. I laid the pack on the ground and looked at the dog.

“If you can back up and step in there, I’ll pull this up around you and then I can put you securely on my back. Your injured leg can rest on my back, and you can put your good leg on my shoulder. Whaddaya think?”

The dog limped around until his back was to me. I put the pack folded up against his back legs and lifted them one after the other into the pack and through the holes I’d cut. Once I did that, I moved in front of him and squatted down again. I pulled on the shoulder straps and shifted the pack and dog up until his left leg easily rested across my shoulder. The pack had a hip belt on it so I pushed the pack up until I could fasten that properly. Once the weight of the dog was sitting on my hips, it was much easier to move about.

“Okay, buddy, let’s get home and see what I can do to fix that leg,” I whispered, slowly standing up.

A long, wet tongue lapped my face from chin to temple and I had to stifle a laugh.

“Yeah, I like you too, buddy,” I replied.

Demon hunting could wait until tomorrow’s twilight.


For this week’s prompt challenge I decided to add to my challenge and combine my assigned prompt with one of the spares. Cedar and I traded prompts. She challenged me with Only human, after all and I picked After dark wasn’t the dangerous time. No, the twilight was always the problem from the list of spares. I do like the way this one turned out. I’ll have to explore this world and the unknown rescuer some more to see what I can discover.

Please follow and like us:

2 Replies to “Twilight Discovery”

Comments are closed.